Way Behind!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Wow, I suddenly find myself with a ton of updated blogs to read! This is what happens when I actually do work when I'm supposed to??

Today was the first afternoon of volunteering that I really didn't feel fruitful. (How ironic will that be if (if) I turn out to be pregnant? Haha.) There was only one client scheduled to come in for a pregnancy test, but two ultrasounds scheduled, one of which being an existing client of mine. So the other counselor took the new test coming in, so I could be in the ultrasound with my client.

Turns out that my client was measuring barely 6 weeks along, so the nurse could barely see a fetal pole, much less any kind of measurable heartbeat. I could feel my client being worried if everything was okay with the baby (especially since 2 weeks ago, we estimated her to be 4-5 weeks), but the nurse said everything looks fine for a barely-6-week yolk sac, so that seemed to reassure my client. I sure am praying for a healthy baby of hers- she has had 2 miscarriages in the last year. She certainly isn't trying to have kids, but I can't imagine miscarriages hurt any less if you aren't trying. But it was kind of a letdown to start off the afternoon with.

I also witnessed the second ultrasound (one of the center volunteers has to accompany the nurse during ultrasounds). It was also a letdown, but for more annoying reasons than anything else (mom seemed detached, somewhat overprotective/overexcited grandma, coupled with totally emotionally-devoid boyfriend).

After these, I didn't really have anything else to do, and I spent some time reviewing some training material, but I was just really tired and feeling lost. Luckily, it was okay for me to leave a little early, and I did my best to get myself out a funk by making up a yummy turkey meatloaf (all fresh ingredients!!) when I got home. I returned to my funk after dinner, but I have seemed to pull out of it again, just in time to hopefully prepare for a good night's sleep.

I'm sure I was bound to have one of these days at the Center, and next week we are closed for Labor Day, so I have two weeks to rejuvenate myself. I really missed meeting with a new client today. Even though last week's client was a toughie, I still liked talking to her and trying to see what her pressures are versus what she really has going for her, relating to the pregnancy. I hope I can see new clients in 2 weeks!! I am really thankful for the opportunity to serve God in this ministry- it has blessed me in ways I couldn't have imagined!

I think I'll probably start AF tomorrow or Wednesday, but I'm triumphantly here at 13dpo with no spotting in sight! Not that I usually have spotting anyway, but it's probably worth noting. Even if I don't start tomorrow or Wednesday, mark my words that I am not peeing on anything until the weekend at the earliest!!!!

Friday Etc.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Thanks for all your comments and support on my last post- it has only been two days since, but so far no more phone calls or anything worse... I think God is calling me to learn how to pray for my enemies- I have never prayed so hard that God would bless someone else with peace and the acceptance to stay the h-e-double-hockey-sticks away from me before!!

Have you noticed that, since I'm 10dpo today, I could feasibly announce my pregnancy on post #100? (No, I'm not testing early at all...) (No, I haven't received a notification from any stork who's planning to visit in May....) (No, I don't have morning sickness yet....)

We made another batch of spaghetti sauce last night- using our own tomatoes, oregano, basil, green peppers, and zucchini!! I think we are getting better with each batch- this time we took out the pulp in the middle, so the consistency was much smoother/creamier. YUM!!

Speaking of food, we did eat our first ears of corn the other night! I took pictures, but I haven't loaded them onto the laptop yet. It was delicious!! We're not sure how many more ears we'll get, but I'll take whatever grows! I think the zucchini's are on their last leg, but there are still two more growing.. and the watermelons and cantelopes are really taking off!! The tomatoes are thriving, too!

I got my new license plates last night!! I am so excited to put them on my car :)

The mornings here have been wonderful. A little foggy, pretty cool, and sooo peaceful and quiet- all you hear is the crickets!! They must have been up late last night because they are chirping like they do in the evenings!

As is evident, I don't really have anything coherent really to write about- just things here and there- I just wanted to move on from that PSA. As important as the concept of privacy is, I don't like having the cause of the PSA linger in any part of my life...


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

This is a PSA about the importance of safeguarding your personal information that can be found online in any form.

At least it is important to me.

I know we are in the fa.cebook age where everyone (including our neighborhood and our mid-50-year old neighbors and the Christian radio station, to name a few odd ball account holders) have a facebo.ok page and delight in reconnecting with people they haven't talked to in a zillion years and excitedly post personal photos and information for all the world to see. So maybe others have a different take on this than I do. (Can you guess that I don't have a fac.ebook account?)

Or maybe I just have made more perceived enemies. Haha.

For a little background, I am not a good breaker-upper. Of all the guys I have ever dated, there is only one (Mr. A not included obviously) that I would even remotely want to say hi to, in the completely nonexistent chance I run into him in the produce section. And I think the feeling is mutual. It seems as if when the relationship didn't work out, it didn't work out in a big way. And I'm really okay with this. Mostly because most of the guys were (I think) fine with going our separate ways, too.

Except one. Who was pissed and creepy and broke into my house while I wasn't there and loaded a virus onto my computer in college when I told him that I didn't want to see him again (he was also from my hometown). And it's this guy who has always remained in the back of my mind, as a little antagonist that reminds me not to put too much info out there, lest he show up at my current house uninvited and unwanted and completely obliteratedly-drunk like he did in college.

And since I graduated from college years ago, I haven't heard another thing from him after a huge blowout at the end (yes, including him screaming, literally, "Aaaah" into the phone when I told him that it was seriously honestly as for-sure as possible over for ever and ever). I honestly hoped he found someone else and was living a fine life.

Until about 2 weeks ago, an unidentified number pops up on the caller ID on my work line from my hometown. The only people who call me from there are my family, and they use my cell number, so I was immediately suspicious, so I didn't answer. Fast forward to this morning when I open my voicemail, and there is a voicemail from the same number, and it's him.

Oh.my.God (and I don't mean that in a "taken in vain" sort of way...).

My number is listed on my workplace's website, so anyone who knows my name can search for me, but I had no idea how he knew my married name. I goog.led myself and Mr. A trying to figure out if there was any possible way this guy could track us to our new town, and there was a way, but it took a little searching around. I relaxed a little. Until this evening when my friend from college emailed me that she added my hometown to my maiden name and up popped one of those school publications where people write in about what they've been up to. Now my parents are still involved in fundraising for that (high) school, so they decided to put detailed blurbs in there about who I married, where we married, where I work, and where we live ........currently!! I thought I had calmed down. I'm now trying (again) to convince myself that we're still safe here and not facing an inevitable ugly personal showdown. No more leaving the kitchen window open when I run to the grocery store. This stinks.

His message was fairly benign but incredulous just the same. He says with a sighing tone, "I just need to talk to an old friend." ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME? You consider me an old friend?!?! What on God's green earth makes you think I'd like to take you up on that or be the least bit willing to talk to you?!?!?!

I will obviously just be ignoring the voicemail, although there is part of me that wants to hire a secretary for the sole purpose of calling him back, just to say that I want nothing to do with him, and he should never call or attempt to make contact again.

Mr. A is fairly concerned, but we are trying not to convince ourselves of the worst. I feel pretty guilty for bringing this baggage into our lives, although I honestly thought that I'd never hear from him again, since I wasn't exactly the nicest breaker-upper, and why would anyone want more of that? Am I the only one who has had such a contentious breakup?!

So anyway, back to the PSA, maybe none of you have people you don't want searching for you, but I caution you against hemmoraging personal information to any avenue that might be published for all the world to see. It can really intellectually muck up an otherwise beautiful day.

If this is God's way of taking my mind of the 2ww, He is doing an excellent job. I guess He wouldn't have it any other way. ;-)

Re and other appts

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

No wonder I'm 15 lbs overweight (per BMI)- with all the french bread and spaghetti sauce!!! (Mr. A wanted ravioli with french (garlic) bread on the side instead, so no meatballs.)

This week is the week of doctors for our "family"...RE appt yesterday, eye appt for me today, shot for Banana tomorrow, eye appt for Mr. A on Thursday. I really, really need to go to the dentist (no problems, just for a prof. cleaning) but I am using the 2ww as an excuse and promise to make an appt in September if I'm not pregnant this time.

(Speaking of my eye appt, my eyes are still dilated, so the whole typing/reading thing is not the clearest yet- I apologize for typos!)

About the RE appt yesterday morning, and I have to say that I am continually impressed with his knowledge and patience and outlook. Basically, he said that the next thing he'd suggest would be a clomid IUI, but I told him that we'd talked about it and since clomid hasn't worked yet (that we know of, wink wink) and since IUI only adds a few percentage points to the success rate, we'd rather try a different medication that increases it more than just a few percentage points. That is totally okay with him, and since my insurance covers follistim (a HUGE blessing), we're going to do another clomid cycle (unless God has blessed us this cycle!) in September (since I will be sitting with my cousins and unavailable for u/s monitoring) and start a follistim cycle (w/ HCG trigger) in October. We'll try timing it ourselves first and move on to IUI in November if necessary. I am really excited! Obviously I hope and pray we won't be in November without having a third mouth to feed at Thanksgiving, but we are seeking the Lord in all things and trying to discern where He's leading us.

The funny part was that he was explaining IUI to me. I was thinking, really, you think at this point I haven't read about all possible treatments and procedures?! I guess it is great that he is so thorough.

I did ask him about his opinion on the relativity of a lap at this point, since I know that is a go-to surgery for some readers. He said that he is old enough to remember when the lap surgery was a normal part of every infertility workup, but what they found was that making everyone have that surgery didn't change the course of treatment/action that much. He said that many times (especially for people who had normal regular (cycle days, bleeding, etc.) periods), they would find nothing during the surgery that would inhibit fertility, therefore putting the woman through an unecessary surgery. Even though it is an easy surgery, it is surgery nontheless. Based on my HSG results, there aren't any blockages in my tubes and my uterus looks normal and healthy (I know this isn't the focus of the HSG, but they can tell in general). I guess nothing is 100%, but he does not think that it is necessary at this point, and I couldn't agree more.

Another piece of great news is that my friend T just received word that they have been accepted by their agency to start the formal application process!!! They got 2 more letters of recommendation from her hubby's doctors that were very positive and supportive of their desire to become adoptive parents!! Praise God for His goodness!!

In other random news, I ordered my very first "fancy" license plate- a Choose Life one! I am so excited- my check to the DMV cleared yesterday, so my new plates should be on their way! Mr. A thinks I will get run off the road by crazies, but as I was driving to work the other week and keeping a keen eye out for special interest bumper stickers/license plates, I decided that if people are still driving around with stickers supporting a certain, um, presidential candidate, considering the state of the country's finances/potential new policies, I can certainly drive around with a license plate in favor of life in general!! I totally encourage everyone I know to have the courage to sign up for one, if your state has one available!!!

"Hangin' in the Rain..

Saturday, August 22, 2009

...I'm haaaaangin' in the rain! What a glorious feelin'! I'm happy again!!... "

(not that I was sad before...I just think it's such an upbeat song!)

Yep, for the first time since we started hanging our clothes outside to dry instead of electric-dryer drying them, just after I finished hanging up my first load, it started raining and hasn't stopped! Ha! I keep looking out the window and wavering if I should go rescue them. They are getting an extra clean rinse, right? We totally need this soaking rain, though....so I'm not really complaining. Not to mention, all three of our rain barrels are filled again!!

Nothing much else going on here today. I'm making french bread rolls in the breadmaker right now (i.e. I dumped all the ingredients into the bucket and pushed "start" about an hour ago, and the dough should be ready for shapingrising/baking in about 20 minutes), and we made 2 more containers of spaghetti sauce last night, using our own tomatoes, peppers, basil and oregano! Mr. A was Mr. Kitchen last night- at 8pm, he gets up and suggests we make the batches of spaghetti sauce...oh yah, and a CAKE, too! It has been so much fun to cook together lately- he has never shown such enthuasiasm for chopping and stirring, etc! I am so thankful for him! The one task he still isn't interested in is clean up.... haha!

I'm thinking I'll make up some meatballs for meatball subs for dinner....

Losing It

Friday, August 21, 2009

Keep in mind I'm 3dpo today. Back on Wednesday, when Mr. A was home for lunch, he turns from the kitchen table towards me as I made us some sandwiches, and asks expectantly (get it?) "Are you pregnant yet?" Ha! Isn't that the funniest joke you have heard in a while?! I cannot wait to announce to him that we're having a baby.

As I was surfing the net yesterday, I came across this website that allows you to make a virtual model of yourself...you can even try clothes on your virtual model! It is alot of fun!! You should try it, especially since it's Friday, and you know you're not concetrating on working... Here is my virtual model (you can even change the hairstyle- "mine" here is a ponytail..):
Pretty normal looking, right? WELL. About the same time, I came across one of those BMI calculators...guess what? I am technically 15 lbs overweight!!!!! I am fairly devastated. I mean, I know I am not a supermodel, but being in the "overweight" category just about kills me. (My number is 26.6, and anything above 25 is overweight...above 30 is obese...) So I go back to change my virtual model to the un-"overweight" weight...
I, for the life of me, can't see any difference.... but nevertheless, Mr. A and I are (supposedly) both about 15 lbs. overweight.

I know that 15 lbs isn't a huge amount (especially since I'm 5'8", so I guess the difference probably won't look as drastic as if I were shorter), but in an effort to be as healthy as possible, we're going to try to eat healthier and get some more exercise. I looked up losing 15 lbs on Dr. Goo.gle, and supposedly if I increase my exercise time by 20 minutes per day (and don't increase eating ice cream- the linchpin!!!), I should be able to trim 15 lbs in about 2 months? That seems a little fast for such little effort, so I am definitely not counting on it, but I'll try it. We're also starting to get our second round of "crops" from our garden (zucchini, tomatoes, green peppers, corn), so we'll be eating lots of fresh food coming up!! (Not to mention, I have already spent all our grocery budget for the month, so we'll have to make do with what I have in the freezer!! Luckily it's pretty well-stocked.)

If this losing all goes as planned, I could be 15 lbs slimmer by November...just in time to gain it back at Thanksgiving!!!

(PS. Mr. A, the awesome husband he is, passionately emphasizes that I am just fine as I am. Gotta love that!!)

(PPS. We don't have a bathroom scale, so figuring out the actual progress might be a little tricky...)

Thanks! And more...

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wow, what humbling comments on my last post about the pregnancy center. You are awesome, and I am so glad that the simple things I was reflecting on encouraged or uplifted you!! Your thoughts inspired me to write a little more about it...

Several wrote that you thought it'd be hard to volunteer there while trying and praying (and begging!) to conceive. Way back in February when I was considering signing up for the training class at this non-denominational Christian pregnancy center, this was my biggest concern, too. I prayed alot about this fear of mine and really tried to discern where God was calling me to minister. After a couple days of praying, I got the sense that I should enroll in the training classes and that God would see me through, despite my fears. Even among the trainees and current volunteers (about 35 people total), I was THE.ONLY.ONE without kids and that stung the night I realized that. As I went through the training, I kept being astonished that God would be calling me to be His face to women coming to the pregnancy center. If it were up to only me, I doubt I could do it. But it's not only me. And God's ways are not my ways. Bonus!!!

God's ways include calling me to be an open vessel for His love, mercy, and compassion to be poured out to the women/girls who come to the center, even as I am on my knees praying that He would have mercy on my empty womb. Before each shift, the counselors gather together and we pray aloud. I pray that I will get out of my own way to let Jesus' message shine through. I pray that my words will be God's words and that whatever God has prepared the client to hear is what will comfort her. (And I pray silently after my turn is up that God will remove the chains of my IF while I am with a client...) And not that I am any angel, but as long as I let God do the talking, it is pretty painless for me. I haven't cried once, and usually on the way home, I instead find myself praying for whoever I saw that day, that the struggles they face will be lifted and washed away by our Lord, rather than being jealous. And that my friends, is ALL God. He has certainly sustained me when I would have certainly fallen on my own.

The fact that He gives me strength and words during my hours at the center is never as needed as when I'm counseling a client who's gone through abo.rtion(s) or who is considering one. A while back I had a client who'd had 5 abo.rtions, but was not considering that choice for her current pregnancy (praise God), and all I wanted to do was convey to her the healing mercy that Jesus offers. Of course on my own, I would have been simply speechless, angry, and aghast that God would choose to open this girl's womb again!! God speaks to me during these times:

"You can do all things in Me who strenthens you." (Phil 4:13)
"I am a shield for you who take refuge in Me." (Ps 18:30)

Yesterday, I kind of touched on the other way that God has really blessed me through volunteering. It is the recognition that everyone has crosses in this life. And since no cross is exactly alike, there are bound to be people we look at and wish we could have a certain part of their lives...but of course we don't want their crosses, either! The women who come into the center may have become pregnant easily while not even paying attention, but their cross might be being unemployed or unmarried or without safe housing. My friend who has a honeymoon baby was obviously fertile, but her tender new marriage has been put on the back burner while they cope with their new (somewhat unwanted) role as parents. Meanwhile, I have an awesome husband, a stable job, a warm home, and a graceful marriage. But no baby(s). The good thing is that God uses our crosses to bring us around to be more Christ-like. Our struggles are not in vain! For example...

We complain about the cross we bear but don't realize it is preparing us for the dip in the road that God can see and we cannot. Whatever your cross, whatever your pain, there will always be sunshine, after the rain.... Perhaps you may stumble, perhaps even fall; But God's always ready, to answer your call.... He knows every heartache, sees every tear, a word from His lips, can calm every fear... Your sorrows may linger, throughout the night, But suddenly vanish, by dawn's early light... The Savior is waiting, somewhere above, to give you His grace, and send you His love. May God fill your day with blessings!! (Taken from an email I received)

I believe that God is using my cross of infertility to help me walk compassionately as a volunteer at the pregnancy center. If I had not been schooled in compassion and selflessness and give-up-your-wants-in-lieu-of-God's-plan over the past 2 years, I doubt I would be a very genuine peer counselor. I pray every day that He will continue to sustain me in my work there, and that He might also allow me to conceive our children soon so that I can teach my kids the magnitude of joy that comes with giving selflessly for only the benefit of others, even when you think it might hurt.

Be blessed today!!!

One Lovely Blog/Clomid 2ww

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The rules of the “One Lovely Blog Award” are: Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link. Pass the award to 15 (I won't have 15 either!) other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

Jen and callmemama nominated me for this award! Thanks girls! I definitely won't have 15 to nominate, and this is list is a compilation of blogs I've been reading for a while and new ones I just found :)

Here are my nominees!
Grace in my Heart (reading for a while- adoption/IF)
The Mac's (reading for a while- loss of a child/new pregnancy)
A Baby Maybe (new find! IF/treatments)
Tales of My Follies (new find! IF/treatments)
Life According to Leah (new find! adoption)
The Martin's (new find! miscarriage/IF)
Eggcetera (reading for a while- IF/treatments)


So assuming today is ovulation day, we now begin the clomid #3 2ww!! I do have high hopes for this cycle, but if not, I am also looking forward to talking with my RE on Monday, a month off in September, and a new course of action in October. We are praying that the Lord might see fit to bless us with our first baby(s) in May 2010 (this cycle)...or June....or July..... etc!!

Yesterday was a very busy day for me- work deadlines and volunteering and trying to figure out what is wrong with my car (Mr. A took care of this part though...but I was still preoccupied with it!). I know that, being a 2003 (bought in 2002), my car isn't a spring chicken, but come on!! I thought cars were supposed to last super long times these days!! Mr. A took it to the shop yesterday morning, and they changed a sensor and thought that would fix the problem, and it did for a while, but when I drove it to pick up some pizza for dinner last night, the service light came back on when I started it up. I have to drive up to work tomorrow night, so I am praying they can fix it for good today!!

Volunteering at the pregnancy center continues to be a great reward to me. I saw two clients yesterday, both positive tests. The one girl was 8.5 weeks along, so she also had an ultrasound. It is amazing to talk to the clients who become pregnant so easily with no prenatals, no coffee-avoiding, no alcohol-avoiding, no cigarette-avoiding (not that I've had to do this), no husband, no praying, no fertility monitor peeing, and no temp checking. It reinforces to me that God truly has a plan for each of us, no matter if we understand it or not, no matter if we are perfect or not, no matter if anyone else thinks we deserve it or not. HE is in control, and HE has great plans of joy for each of us, as long as we entrust our lives to Him. Even the times we are tearful are redeemed through Him. He uses all things for good!

It also helps me remember that I'm not the only one carrying a cross in this world. The clients sit across from me carrying their cross of being unexpectedly pregnant, while I sit across from them carrying my cross of longing to see my belly grow.

It is an encouragement to tame any envy that I feel- it's not like when you become pregnant your life falls right into order and a Pot.tery Barn nursery falls out of the sky. The girls/couples who come into our center are facing real hard life struggles, and it gives me an opportunity to intensively reflect on all the blessings I have been given in my life: an awesome husband, a good education, a good job, a nice house, stable finances, just to name a few!

Because my day was going to be so busy, I laid in bed yesterday morning praying to God to help me get through the day. It was very heavy on my heart that the only way I'd get through the day was with Jesus by my side. If I thought of everything that "I" had to do, I began to feel overwhelmed, but the instant I remembered that God would be with me, I felt calm! I praise God for his mercy and love that are new each morning.

I better sign off now- hope this wasn't too rambly :) I wavered between doing two separate posts, but I've been wanting to put up the Lovely Blog nominees and can't wait another day! :) You all have been so encouraging to me during my journey- including the new blogs I read- just reading your journeys has helped me to feel not alone!

It's Been a While

Monday, August 17, 2009

Oops, it has been several days since I last wrote. We have changed our cable TV situation, so we are watching more shows on the laptop lately, which means I can't clatter away in the evenings!!

I just got my peak this morning, have my normal pre-o mild headache, and thanks to the CVS brand of robitu.ssin, I have had pretty decent CM this time! Score ONE for the generic- I am usually a brand snob! We are making the most of it, too..haha.

My friend K has her HSG on Friday, so keep her in your prayers!!

I will do my best to update more intelligently tomorrow morning- today has been super busy.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

The non-housewife wife tagged me, oh, a while ago, and I choose to do the 8x8! I should have done it before now...

The Rules:
Mentioned who tagged you: see above
Complete the list of 8’s
Tag 8 people

8 Things I'm looking forward to:
  1. Seeing Mr. A hold our children
  2. Fall
  3. Being pregnant/having kids at Christmas-time
  4. The day we sell our rental property
  5. Morning Sickness (hehe)
  6. When all my flowerbeds behave
  7. Retirement!
  8. Eating homegrown corn on the cob
8 Things I did yesterday:
  1. Took Banana on our normal walks
  2. Went to a winery with my sister
  3. Celebrated country life by going to the county fair's Demolition Derby!!
  4. Worked from home
  5. Made homemade onion bagels
  6. Picked more zucchini and roma tomatoes from the garden
  7. Floated around in the pool
  8. Ate ice cream at 9:45 pm
8 Things I wish I could do:
  1. Have our first baby(s) in May 2010
  2. Stay on top of the floor-mopping situation
  3. Make frosting from scratch
  4. Convince Mr. A to like flavored brewed coffee
  5. Win the lottery
  6. Go 80 or 85mph on the highway (legally)
  7. Be one of the 45% of people who are successful after 3 rounds of clomid
  8. Buy a black Rang.e Rover
8 Shows I watch:
  1. Dancing with the Stars
  2. The Office
  3. The Next Food Network Star
  4. House Hunters
  5. Everyday Itallian
  6. Seinfeld
  7. Wheel of Fortune
  8. Barefoot Contessa
8 Favorite Fruits:
  1. Raspberry
  2. Strawberry
  3. Sour Cherry
  4. Pineapple
  5. Cantelope
  6. Watermelon
  7. Apple
  8. Plum
8 Places I'd like to Travel:
  1. Grand Canyon
  2. Wyoming Rockies
  3. Italy
  4. Hawaii
  5. Alaska
  6. Australia
  7. Denmark
  8. The Carribean
(I'm leaving off "8 Places I've Lived" in the interest of anonymity.)

8 Folks I'm Tagging:
  1. Baby Hungry
  2. Hoping in Houston
  3. Being Infertile
  4. Making Me Mom
  5. Barren and Believing
  6. Day by Day
  7. The Pifer Family
  8. The Potter Family
I also got tagged again recently by two lovely people- more on that tag tomorrow!

Sister Time

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My two sisters and I went to see Julie & Julia last night. What a great movie! I read a review that said that the parts with Julie were lame, but I disagree wholeheartedly. I thought it was a wonderful movie, and it would be a DVD I would actually consider buying! (I am very selective as to what I put in my personal collection!)

There is one scene with Julia (Meryl Streep is so good as Julia!) where she receives a letter that her sister (newly married) is pregnant. She sobs into her husband's chest, and although no tears sprung for me, it was so real. I'm not sure if Streep struggled at all with IF, but she must have talked intimately to someone who did or something, because her portrayal was spot on. It was perfect, and I just sat there feeling quite validated about the sadness that I experience when I get similar news. So even though I definitely identified with the pain, the whole movie was so fun and positive, that it kind of gave me an insight into how even a life without children can be full and wonderful. Of course I don't want to be without children forever (please Lord), but it inspired me to really live it up with my husband right now- he is such a blessing!

I definitely recommend the movie- especially as an inspiration to those of us still waiting to really embrace life to the fullest every day!

Busy busy

Monday, August 10, 2009

Thanks for your comments on my last post- I will keep you posted with any new developments!!

We had a busy weekend (my aunt/uncle/cousins and my next sister came over yesterday morning and we had a day-long pool party! It was a perfect pool party day, but Mr. A and I were exhausted last night after cleaning up!), and my other sister is coming this evening to visit for a few days, so I will likely not be posting much this week. Today is CD7, so my last clomid will be tonight. I have been taking the pills at about 930pm, and I haven't had any headaches this time. (The last two cycles I took the pills more about 11pm.) Not sure if the time matters, but it is nice to not have had any headaches this far!

Please keep my friend T in your prayers. Her hubby has a heart condition, and their adoption agency wanted a letter from his doctor saying that his condition wouldn't affect the parenting of a child. Well, long story short, their doctor wrote this very involved letter with some good points, but in regards to that specific question, basically said he couldn't say whether or not the condition would affect parenting of a child. (And really, I think he's technically right, but the bigger question is that what if one of them were to have an undiagnosed condition- how does being human affect your ability to parent?) So the agency wants more letters from more of his doctors to see what they will say. If I were them, I would be so angry at the doctor, but I think that is just my human weakness coming out- the doc probably thought it was good to be brutually honest. I'm just praying that their other doctors will be moved to write the words that will affirm to their agency that they would be great parents.

Some Q's & A's

Friday, August 07, 2009

I got to talk to my RE's nurse Wednesday morning, and I got all of my questions (at that point) answered. I am all for this third clomid cycle, and I'm prayin my heart out that I don't need to indulge my type-A wonderings of this week. Game day #2 is today! Go team clomid!

In the very unfortunate (from my perspective, not God's omniscient one) situation that He does not use clomid to bless us with our first baby/ies, we needed to start preparing ourselves for what are our next options.

Just to review, because I think at least a few of you will ask, Mr. A and I have both been checked out, and everything looks a-okay except I had low progesterone (no/weak ovulation?) prior to clomid (my RE found this upon review of my records sent from my Gyn). I don't have any crazy pain associated with my cycle, don't have energy issues, have at least a 13-day LP (even before clomid), don't have spotting mid-LP through the end, normally have good CM (although clomid did decrease it a little), and don't really have any symptoms of any other assorted conditions that can interfere with babymaking. This doesn't mean there might not be one, I guess, but at this point, my RE's diagnosis is low progesterone, and it seems like clomid is just what I need, because it did do a great job increasing my p+7 progesterone from 6.4 to 16.8.

Let's just reiterate that I pray that God uses this clomid cycle to bless us with our first child/ren.

In the event that He does not, though, we have at least three options/permutations ahead of us. We aren't opposed to any of them- just trying at this point to figure out where God is leading us at the point when we need to make a decision.

Option 1: Clomid IUI (take clomid, have u/s monitoring, HCG shot, IUI)- This would bypass any CM disaster that I'm not picking up on- approximate cost $850 (I guess we could also just take 3 more cycles of clomid alone, but my RE normally adds IUI after three unsuccessful cycles to up the anty a few percentage points.)

Option 2: Follistim without IUI- This is an injectible suped-up version of clomid from what I can tell. The completely awesome blessing is that my insurance covers this drug, as far as I and the insurance lady at my RE's office can tell (I still want to call my insurance and confirm this with an actual person). This is huge because one follistim cycle is about $800-900 otherwise.

Option 3: Follistim with IUI: Pretty self-explanatory (see Option 1 plus Option 2), except the IUI cost would be the same as in Option 1, so this cycle would be about $850.

We are not considering IVF right now for a variety of reasons, nor was it even brought up by my RE because I don't think he thinks we'll be unsuccessful after clomid and/or these things he's already suggested.

I think we are leaning towards either Option 2 or Option 3 initially (way before we need to decide, see below), because we aren't dealing with any MFI, so I don't think Option 1 is going to be much more successful than us on our own. Plus I think we are interested in being as proactive as we feel appropriate at this point. We are planning on making a list of boundaries before any further treated cycles- financially, emotionally, spiritually, and procedure-wise, so we are not sucked into more cycles, etc. by force of momentum than we rationally feel we can traverse. If God does not use these options to give us biological children, I assume at that point that we will revisit adoption.

The thing is that, if I'm not pregnant this time, and since my cycles are so predictable, September's ovulation time window is when I'll be watching my younger cousins while their parents go to parents' weekend at their oldest son's college. As in, I'll be a little over an hour from my RE's office and playing soccer mom. So I can't exactly scadoodle for monitoring or IUI whenever the eggies decide it's time to go. ("Oh, instead of going to your soccer game this morning, we are going to the doctor office to look at a tv screen! Doesn't that sound exciting? ooOOOooo!") Mr. A will be with me, though, so all will not be lost.

That means we have until the October cycle to figure out where God is pulling us. No doubt we will spend much time in prayer between now and then, both praying that He'll bless us before we need to make this decision, and praying that He will lead us in all circumstances with a hand that is undeniable. I am actually thankful that we have this time to take our time and decide and really give God the opportunity to direct us.

I am excited and continue to feel like our baby is not that far away. I pray we'll be a family of at least three this Christmas.

Show us Your face, Jesus!!

Hectic Week

Thursday, August 06, 2009

I have had a really busy week, and so I feel behind on commenting and posting and everything!! I am doing well (CD3), and getting ready to kick off the third monthly celebration of clomid-pallooza tonight!!

I did get a chance to talk with my RE's nurse yesterday, and Mr. A and I have had some great conversations as to what we'd like to try next and what are the limitations on how much (emotionally, financially) we will invest in trying for a biological child before we move (again) towards adoption. We are very excited and on the same page and continuing to seek where God is leading us right now!

More tomorrow-

Artistic Diversion

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

In an effort to take my mind off CD2 and the million-and-one questions I hope to discuss over the phone with my RE and/or his nurse this morning, I am looking forward to a visit from my cousins this weekend, and a visit from my sister next week. It is going to be awesome!!

Speaking of that sister, I will now shamelessly plug her talent as an artist...

Plain and simple, you should check out her etsy site if you have any need or want for some awesome paintings and/or sketches. She does beautiful custom paintings for people, mostly from digital photographs, or she has started making prints of some of her paintings in her "store" that you can choose from!

All the paintings in our home are hers (the first ones are pretty big, and the last three are 5x7 size, and I have them hung horizontally in series). Here are some samples!

(Bigger) Kerplunk (CD1)

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Thank you all so much for your hopes and prayers!! Temp back down to 98.05 today (0.02 below coverline). BFN on the test...I am sure glad I didn't fork over the $17 for the digitals! Ever-so-faint light brown spotting this morning, but I think I honestly feel the cramps coming on. At 15dpo, I am honestly just ready for CD1. I can appreciate I have great LP's without any spotting mid-LP, but when it gets to this point, let's just get it over with if we're heading to CD1 anyway!

Busy day here- work, haircut this morning, and then a teleconference this afternoon... Will post more tomorrow :)

ETA: I have definitely started. Looking forward to my own pot of flavored coffee this afternoon! And 4 klond.ike's and a bowl of l.ays and onion dip for lunch. Hehe, okay maybe not four klond.ike's... Since I didn't start until like 1030am this morning, I won't reset my monitor until tomorrow, but do I count today as CD1 for clomid's sake? I am thinking yes, and I'm not sure how much it would actually matter, but I was just wondering.

14dpo! (update w IF humor)

Monday, August 03, 2009

Thanks for your prayers for me regarding my past post- Friday was not a good day to have a huge temp drop and deal with those issues!!

But, today is 14dpo, and my temp (15 minutes earlier than usual, I might add, for comic relief) is 98.36!! I had a tiny bit of pink spotting first thing this morning that is now barely noticeable (even when I get the TP 2 inches from my face...) and very light brown. I woke up this morning feeling wonderful, literally I think I was smiling in my sleep, because I had just dreamt that Mr. A and I were taking our tiny baby for a hike. Nevermind the fact that we had not decided to take the baby for a hike in the front carrier or wrap or backpack. No, we were hauling the carseat up the trail!

I am really not sure what to think. Spotting usually means AF will start within 24 hours.

(Update: I just went to the pharmacy to get a box of pregnancy tests. First of all, I haven't bought any in a looong time, and I brought $10 with me. Ha! When did pregnancy tests become so freakin expensive?! I barely got a box of Answer's! I think those are good, right? Also, I resisted the temptation (chuckling the whole drive there) to buy the ultimate infertile-15dpo-eve-jackpot consisting of a box of pregnancy tests, a box of pads, and a box of tampons, just to cover all the bases. Wouldn't that have been the perfectly and hilariously ironic purchase? But, I decided that for tonight, my hope will still sustain a more normal purchase of just the pregnancy tests. We'll see what the morning brings! Actually, at least one of my sisters reads this, so I might take tomorrow off of posting in case I need to tell her in some awesome creative way that I will now do my best to think up! Or in case I will need a day to take my CD1 frustrations out on the weeds in my flowerbeds...oh yah, remember, hope is not considering the latter yet!)